ANKENY, Iowa — Casey's General Stores Inc. hired Chris Jones in the newly created position of chief marketing officer.
In this role, Jones will oversee Casey's marketing, advertising, foodservice and digital activities, among other duties.
Previously, Jones held leadership or executive roles at Mars Inc. and Athene USA (formerly Aviva USA). He most recently served as senior vice president of marketing at Kum & Go, where he championed brand and customer experience initiatives, as well as the creation, implementation and development of the convenience store operator's first customer loyalty program.
"We're excited to add Chris to our team to help us drive our newly announced value creation plan," said Casey's President and CEO Terry Handley. "Chris brings 27 years of marketing, brand strategy and digital engagement expertise that will help us execute against our plan and support our future growth."
Casey's laid out its new value creation plan in March, three months after shareholders pushed for a strategic review of the company, as Convenience Store News reported.
The c-store chain is following a roadmap to drive store growth and increase company value through its fiscal year 2021, according to Handley. The goal is to use its track record of successful programs as a foundation.
"Our plan to build on this strong foundation involves enhancing store performance while maintaining a disciplined approach to capital allocation," Handley said when announcing the plan in March. "We are also announcing strategic board and governance initiatives that enhance alignment between our strategy, board and shareholders."
Under the store enhancement portion of Casey's value creation plan, there are three key initiatives: digital engagement, fleet card program and price optimization.
According to Handley, Casey's has developed a detailed roadmap of implementation and its new chief marketing officer will lead this implementation process.
As part of the digital engagement program, Casey's intends to develop a "seamless customer experience — both online and in-store — that offers new digital product categories and facilitates personalized marketing and rewards."
Components will include an enhanced website, redesigned mobile app, a loyalty program, in-store technology, and enhanced enterprise infrastructure.
By 2021, Casey's expects the combined components of the value creation plan to drive growth in: same-store fuel gallons of at least 4 percent, same-store sales in grocery and other merchandise of at least 6 percent, and same-store sales in prepared food and fountain of at least 10 percent.
Ankeny-based Casey's General Stores operates more than 2,000 convenience stores in 15 states.